Dugouts and Diapers

Jessica Starr Nichols

School Dances and Birthday Parties

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There comes a moment when a mother spends all of her free time, the week of the school dance, making sure her thirteen year old has his hair cut, outfit purchased and tailored, tickets to the dinner and dance purchased, and then it’s time for pictures, and she stands behind the lens with tears in her eyes wondering where her baby boy went. I love that he still asks for Adam’s and my input on which tie will look best with the shirt he has picked out, and he asks to wear his dad’s expensive cologne. I’m beyond thankful that he’s confident enough to ask a girl to dance, and he knows to compliment her while they’re dancing. It brings my heart joy that he has grown into the young man that he is. I’m going to give Adam and myself a pat on the back, because his actions reflect on our parenting, and I know we’ve done a tremendous job thus far. Most importantly, his actions are a reflection of Who lives in his heart.

DSC_7243Friday night was Houston Academy’s homecoming dance for the 7th and 8th graders. I’ve never seen Banks look quite so handsome. He looked so grown up. Simultaneously, I felt proud yet sorrowful. I’m proud of the young man he’s become, and I wonder how in the world the last 13 years seemed to fly by. Adam and I wanted to do something special for him before the dance, so we took him to a local haberdashery and purchased him a new shirt, tie, and dress pants. My parents asked Banks what he would like for making such great grades, and he mentioned that he would like to have a blazer. They blessed him with a handsome navy, wool blazer. Adam does email marketing in his spare time for a few local businesses, and one of those businesses is S. Brannon Clothing. You won’t find a finer men’s clothing store anywhere. Steve and his wife Patty truly devote all of their passion to their business. I’m not sure if it’s the atmosphere of antiques and smiling faces, or if it’s the combination of those two characteristics along with the fine quality of clothing available at S. Brannon, but one thing is for sure, when you are dressed well, you carry yourself in a manner that exudes confidence and quality. Banks’ confidence was apparent Friday night as he was dressed in his fine accoutrements from S. Brannon Clothing.

DSC_7225When we picked Banks up from the dance, he was eager to let us know how great of a time he had. He got to dance with his crush, which, to a 13 year old boy, means the entire night was a success. As his mom, I would say, “She is a lucky young lady to get to dance with you!” He let us know that he felt bad for his peers that didn’t get asked to dance or got turned down, but then told us that he encouraged them by saying, “Don’t worry about it, because God has the perfect person for you.” Some of our friends wonder why we would allow our 13 year old to go to a school dance. Well, that’s why! He’s an amazing kid, and we trust him to do what’s right. We’ve taught him how to treat others, and we couldn’t be more proud of him!

DSC_7294Weston turned 3 on Friday morning at 12:18 am. We spent the day by eating birthday pancakes, and after we dropped his bubba off at the Homecoming dinner, Adam, Weston, and myself went to Chuck E Cheese’s! It brought back wonderful memories of my childhood, and it was a first for both Adam and Weston. He was on sensory overload!!!!! The flashing lights, sounds emitted by the games, and an 8 foot tall dancing mouse was right up Weston’s alley. He used all 15 of his tokens and won 35 tickets. He had a variety of prizes he could trade in his tickets for, and he picked a whistle and a Tootsie Roll. Wise choice, I think. It was such a lovely time for the three of us.

DSC_7299Saturday morning we headed to the park for Weston’s birthday party. As each of his friends ran up the sidewalk, he embraced them with a hug and was so overjoyed to see them. He and his friends played, climbed, went down the slide, and then Weston says, “Mommy, please me have cake now.” No problem, buddy! Anything you want!!!!! He told me he wanted a soccer ball cake back in July, and none of the local bakeries had a cake that looked like an actual soccer ball, so I found instructions on Pinterest and did it myself. They snacked on apple slices, Lay’s chips, and Gatorade before eating the soccer ball cake.

DSC_7390He was so excited to hear all of his friends singing, “Happy Birthday, Dear Weston….” He asked me everyday last week to sing it to him, and his little face lit up as all of his buddies sang in unison. He blew out his 3 candles, and looked over at me as he was eating his cake and said, “Dis cake is dewicious, mommy.” Perfect, my love! He just melts my heart. He has played, nonstop, with all of his new toys, footballs, and soccer ball. As the time drew close for his friends to leave, he hugged each one and told them thank you for coming to his party. He has so much love in his heart, and just like his brother, he treats people well. Again, props to Adam and myself for the parenting win with our boys and props that both boys exude the love of Jesus.


No matter their age or where these boys go in life, they will always be my babies, and I will always be here for them and available to help them whenever they need me. They are the perfect combinations of Adam and myself, and we couldn’t love any two children any more than we love Banks and Weston. They make us proud, and I’m thankful that they love us enough to talk to us about their school dance and to tell us that they had the best birthday party ever. Life is just better with my man clan! Thanks for reading and join me next week for a tribute to my sweet 80 year old Granny, whom we will be celebrating this weekend.


Author: jstarrnichols

I'm a wife, mother, daughter, and friend. I love Jesus, my family, my friends, and my life. I enjoy writing, yoga, laughing, and spending time with my manclan. I’m merely striving to be the best version of myself.

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